August 2014

It may seem like magic, but astronomers have worked out a scheme that will allow them to detect and measure particles ten times smaller than the width of a human hair, even at many light-years distance.

We address disequilibrum abundances of some simple molecules in the atmospheres of solar composition brown dwarfs and self-luminous extrasolar giant planets using a kinetics-based 1D atmospheric chemistry model.

We present spectrally and spatially-resolved maps of HNC and HC3N emission from Titan's atmosphere, obtained with the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) on 2013 November 17.

The diversity and quantity of moons in the Solar System suggest a manifold population of natural satellites exist around extrasolar planets.

Observations were made for a number of carbon-rich circumstellar envelopes using the Phoenix spectrograph on the Gemini South telescope to determine the abundance of small carbon chain molecules.

Interstellar molecules with a peptide link -NH-C(=O)-, like formamide (NH2 CHO), acetamide (NH2 COCH3) and isocyanic acid (HNCO) are particularly interesting for their potential role in pre-biotic chemistry.

We present a deep near-infrared image of the newly discovered brown dwarf WISE J085510.83-071442.5 (W0855) using the FourStar imager at Las Campanas Observatory.

Recently, the Kepler Space Telescope has detected several planets in orbit around a close binary star system.

Researchers this week published a paper confirming that the waters and sediments of a lake that lies 800 meters (2,600 feet) beneath the surface of the West Antarctic ice sheet support "viable microbial ecosystems."

According to new research humble, microscopic organisms can create dripstones in caves. This illustrates how biological life can influence the formation of Earth's geology - and the same may be happening right now on other planets in space.

One of the most bizarre-looking fossils ever found - a worm-like creature with legs, spikes and a head difficult to distinguish from its tail - has found its place in the evolutionary Tree of Life, definitively linking it with a group of modern animals for the first time.

The first analysis of space dust collected by a special collector onboard NASA's Stardust mission and sent back to Earth for study in 2006 suggests the tiny specks, which likely originated from beyond our solar system, are more complex in composition and structure than previously imagined.

Tau Ceti is a nearby, mature G-type star very similar to our Sun, with a massive Kuiper Belt analogue (Greaves et al. 2004) and possible multiplanet system (Tuomi et al. 2013) that has been compared to our Solar System.

A team of astronomers from Leiden University, The Netherlands, measured the chemical fingerprint of the smallest aromatic molecule.

Water vapor has been detected in protoplanetary disks. In this work we model the distribution of water vapor in protoplanetary disks with a thermo-chemical code.

A NASA-led team of scientists has created detailed 3-D maps of the atmospheres surrounding comets, identifying several gases and mapping their spread at the highest resolution ever achieved.

Scientists hunting for life beyond Earth have discovered more than 1,800 planets outside our solar system, or exoplanets, in recent years, but so far, no one has been able to confirm an exomoon.

We describe the framework and strategy of the \^G infrared search for extraterrestrial civilizations with large energy supplies, which will use the wide-field infrared surveys of WISE and Spitzer to search for these civilizations' waste heat.

Super-Earths with orbital periods less than 100 days are extremely abundant around Sun-like stars. It is unlikely that these planets formed at their current locations.

New three-dimensional reconstructions show how some of the earliest animals on Earth developed, and provide some answers as to why they went extinct.

Scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen have discovered that these communities of microorganisms play a part in breaking down the oil and have published their findings in the renowned journal Science.

The large majority of stars in the Milky Way are late-type dwarfs, and the frequency of low-mass exoplanets in orbits around these late-type dwarfs appears to be high.

Having a companion in old age is good for people -- and, it turns out, might extend the chance for life on certain Earth-sized planets in the cosmos as well.